Digital Culture 1D Lauren Clark
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We Won the Open Data Battle. Now Comes the Tricky Part | David Eaves @ Slate

We Won the Open Data Battle. Now Comes the Tricky Part | David Eaves @ Slate | Digital Culture 1D Lauren Clark | Scoop.it

For many of us who have campaigned for the right to access and reuse government information, it would be easy to pause and relish the sweet victory. We have the ammunition, so now, believe the most techno-utopian advocates, open data will fundamentally change politics—depoliticizing debates and eliminating irresponsible positions.

But that would be a mistake.


Now we must renew the much larger battle over the role of evidence in public policy. On the surface, the open data movement was about who could access and use government data. It rested on the idea that data was as much a public asset as a highway, bridge, or park and so should be made available to those who paid for its creation and curation: taxpayers. But contrary to the hopes of some advocates, improving public access to data—that is, access to the evidence upon which public policy is going to be constructed—does not magically cause governments’, and politicians’, desire for control to evaporate. Quite the opposite. Open data will not depoliticize debate. It will force citizens, and governments, to realize how politicized data is, and always has been.


Governments, lobbyists, and other vested interests have always tried to shape public perception to their advantage through data—hence the line about “lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Our future will not be filled with a greater consensus on how to solve problems but by new debates over what, how, and why data are collected in service of public discourse. These political fights will be painful and they will matter. A lot.


Via Jose Murilo
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Google, US book publishers settle digital copyright tussle; legal battle with authors drags on | Washington Post

Google, US book publishers settle digital copyright tussle; legal battle with authors drags on | Washington Post | Digital Culture 1D Lauren Clark | Scoop.it

Google and major book publishers have settled a lengthy legal battle over digital copyrights, but a bigger dispute still looms with thousands of authors who allege that Google is illegally profiting from their works.

 

The truce announced Thursday ends a federal lawsuit filed in 2005 by several members of the Association of American Publishers after Google Inc. began stockpiling its Internet search index with digital duplicates of books scanned from libraries.

 

Apple Inc.’s iPhone 5 won the backing of Consumer Reports, whose criticism of an earlier model became known as “Antennagate” and who said the latest device is among the best on the market despite its map flaws.

 

Google has maintained that its scanning is covered by fair-use provisions of copyright law, although it offered to remove specific books from its index upon request. It also showed only snippets of the copyrighted books unless permission was given to show more.

 

Publishers and authors, however, insisted that Google needed explicit permission from them before making the digital copies, let alone showing even snippets of text from the books on Google’s website.


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Northern_Clips's curator insight, January 25, 2013 2:29 PM

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